FDP and Australia's QUT to Develop Disease-Resistant Bananas


Fresh Del Monte Produce has partnered with Australia's Queensland University of Technology (QUT) to develop disease-resistant bananas through its subsidiary Del Monte International.

Under the new partnership, the two entities will focus on growing bananas less vulnerable to Tropical Race 4 (TR4) disease and more sustainable to the food supply.

Fresh Del Monte Research and Development, Agricultural Services senior vice-president and chief sustainability officer Hans Sauter said: "We are addressing critical issues facing our industry as we speak.

"The ability to leverage the capabilities of the team at QUT is exciting. We see the potential with these revolutionary technologies, and we are looking forward to putting these tools to work to solve real problems facing the world.

"Fresh Del Monte is proud to partner with a respected research university facility like QUT in this endeavour."

The partnership with QUT is in line with Fresh Del Monte's global operational priorities to bolster its position in the banana market while enhancing its customer and consumer loyalty through product innovation.

Fresh Del Monte will fund scientific research to address this threat against farmers and the entire supply chain.

QUT's scientific team will be led by Professor James Dale, a leading researcher in biotechnology.

Dale said: "These new gene-editing technologies represent a unique opportunity for addressing the global food supply in ways we never imagined.

"Our partnership with Fresh Del Monte represents a great opportunity for our research to reach society in an efficient and commercially feasible manner."

The research collaboration between Fresh Del Monte and QUT will be carried out in multiple phases over the next five years.

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